Thursday, 28 May 2015

The two day trip to Senegal (Day 1 morning cont.) - Gorée island - In search of the hotel Augustin Ly; first impressions - The 23rd of May 2015


The bustling around the small harbour contrasted with the quietness emanating from the almost deserted streets to be seen at Gorée island's entrance with just a few people going on their errands.

As we made our way through the narrow streets and alleys of the island in search of my Bed and Breakfast Hotel I realised islanders must have just started their morning chores. It was still fairly early and the first ferry had just docked some minutes before. 

The Portuguese were the first to establish their presence on the 900 metre long island (circa 1440 AD). The House of the slaves together with the actual Police Station are said to be among the oldest houses on the island with the Police station believed to have been the site of the first chapel built by the Portuguese in the 15th century.

 Aly, the guide

I fell in love with the yellows and reds of the colonial like houses said to have been constructed during the second half of the 18th century. There was something rather peaceful about the "village" with its specks of green foliage and shrubery here and there. It very much looked like any Portuguese village down the southern part of mainland Portugal and had it not been for the typical African heat and the rather unique smell of Africa I might have said I was home.

The hotel stood in a rather shy looking alley. It was a former colonial house turned into a bread and breakfast hotel, which at first sight looked like it was very well decorated in a mixed African style. I just dropped my backpack and got ready to start the visit to the island, which would take a few hours. I would certainly have time to further explore the accommodation later on. 

(To be continued)

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